In a story yesterday in Research Professional News, cOAlition S and Plan S all but admitted defeat:
Funders participating in the Plan S initiative have invited the research sector to join them in trying to rethink the “dysfunctional” model of open access in scholarly publishing.
Under Plan S, the Coalition S group of funders is requiring immediate open access to papers reporting research they have supported. The group announced on 27 June that it will establish a working group to identify business models other than the prevalent article processing charges. . . . last month the Council of the EU member state governments agreed a stance that “the increasing costs of…scholarly publishing cause inequalities and are becoming unsustainable”.
The futility of all of this OA nonsense was apparent to anyone with real expertise in scholarly publishing. Note that the objection is economic, not moral or philosophical, however — the COI at the heart of authors paying publishers isn’t a concern, just the cost. Talk about cynical and self-serving.
Unfortunately, now that the APC model has taken root, look for major players benefiting from it to work hard to stymie a shift away.